Reply To: touring auschwitz, dachau, bergen belsen, etc

Home Forums Decaffeinated Coffee touring auschwitz, dachau, bergen belsen, etc Reply To: touring auschwitz, dachau, bergen belsen, etc


Wait a minute, you haven’t heard my tirade yet.

I am not in a position to travel on one of these tours now anyway, but even if I could I would not go!

Firstly, I have no desire to return to the necrotic soil of Europe. Every daled amos is another lug of martyred Jewish blood. I would not willingly walk again into the putrid environment of more than 1,000 years of senseless slaughter. It makes me shake when I but consider the history of the place.

Second, I see these destinations as another piece of the sickness. In a devastated and unproductive country, instead of burying their heads in shame for eternity and cowering at the mention of the Holocaust(s), they make a MUSEUM out of it. I cannot express on a blog the amount of anger that causes me. Even now these pernicious creatures continue to capitalize on the murder of our innocent family? My family – your family – all of our family!? Is there no industry for them to make their business that they have to turn their inhumanity into a TOURIST ATTRACTION?

Finally, I will add that it is my belief that people visit these places as a way of assuaging their guilt at not giving the Holocaust enough thought. I understand this, truly. It would be a terrible feeling, to know that one is living his life in a way that just about ignores the history of his People; to be dancing and playing and enjoying Chol Hamoed trips when a few short years ago his grandparents and their generation were shot and enslaved and treated in the most barbaric of ways. Yet, visiting these places is but another way of distancing oneself from the events; not making them more a part of him. The once in a lifetime visit is not going to make one feel better about forgetting the suffering.

But I tell you- there is no need to feel guilt in this way if you remember the lessons of the Holocaust and the other persecutions always. There is no need to feel guilty of enjoying one’s life (properly). We are given a time to mourn each year, during Tisha B’av and the 3 weeks leading up to it- we are not to spend the rest of the year mourning. Mindfulness suffices for the other 49 weeks. Visiting a museum such as this is worth less than nothing. Pick up a book about the event instead, with pictures if it is more meaningful to you that way.